linda-naeveName:  Linda Naeve

Title and Company:  Extension Program Specialist in the Value Added Agriculture Program with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach.

Hometown:  Decorah, Iowa

Major and Graduation Date:  BS Horticulture 1977.  MS Horticulture (vegetable crop production) 1980.

Major job/Position Responsibilities:  As an Extension horticulture specialist in the Value Added Agriculture Program, I have the opportunity to work on several interesting projects.  I am on the Iowa State University Produce Food Safety Team working to educate commercial fruit and vegetable producers on the FSMA Produce Safety Rule.  I also serve as the Iowa Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) Program Coordinator in the North Central Region.  My role as state coordinator involves working with educators and leaders in all aspects of sustainable agriculture on grant and education programs, resources and professional development.  I work closely with the Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Local Foods Team to help local producers increase their production and profitability.  I continue to partner with Extension fruit and vegetable specialists in the Horticulture Department on various projects.

What you like most about your job/position:  I work with outstanding, dedicated professionals who share my passion to help and educate Iowans about sustainable agriculture production and build awareness of our local food system.  I am continually learning and presented with new and diverse opportunities.

What advice would you give to current students:  Be willing to step outside your comfort zone; accept opportunities in life that challenge you.  You will surely grow personally and professionally.